"It's the people ... stupid".

Author:Leuenberger, Deniz Z.
Position:Cities and the Creative Class - Review - Book Review

A Review of Richard Florida's Cities and the Creative Class (New York: Routledge, 2005)

Richard Florida's Cities and the Creative Class allows us to revisit themes introduced by the author's 2002 work The Rise of the Creative Class and How It's Transforming Work, Leisure, Community and Everyday Life with greater empirical precision and the benefit of added reflection and introspection. Cities and the Creative Class is a further elaboration of research that led to Florida's theoretical concept of creative class and its relationship to geography and economic growth. The book serves as a tool for local government decision making and for human resources, urban, and economic development. It's a valuable guide for public administrators interested in regional growth through the use of what Florida considers the most valuable economic asset: people. With increasing emphasis on attracting quality individuals to public agency employment, the book also provides insights for creating environments that are inviting to creative, knowledgeable workers.

Creative Class: Economic Growth and Public Management

In Florida's view, cities should be centers of creativity and creative capital is the key resource, which can transform regional markets. Because creative class workers, (individuals financially compensated for their creative work), prefer looser ties and increased diversity and inclusion in their communities, creative capital becomes more important than social capital in attracting economic growth. This is, he suggests, because creative class individuals are less interested in the ties of civic duty and responsibility than they are in less invasive, temporary community ties. He states,

"The kinds of communities both that we desire and that generate prosperity are different than those of the past." Florida recommends harnessing creative potential through the use of the "3 Ts of economic development, technology, talent, and tolerance." Attracting creative-class in-dividuals, he argues, is the single most important tool for cities seeking economic growth.


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